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6 Unusual Ways in Which Color can Affect our Choices in Life

6 Unusual Ways in Which Color can Affect our Choices in Life

Color can affect us in great measures. Starting from our mood, emotions, to actions and words – color can significantly affect them, psychologists say. It is well known that certain colors have certain type of effects and meaning, such as white representing innocence, or that blue makes us calm, or that red makes us aggressive, passionate and alert.

However, not everyone believes this. Or not everyone consciously notices this. The whole topic of psychology of color has been a great trick used by marketing agencies, supermarkets, designers and the rest. It certainly paid off for them. And when you think about it, we have been under the influence of color all along. Just think about the clothes you are wearing, your hair color, your house, car and everything else. Aren’t those things in that specific color because you wanted them like that?

Clearly, color has power, both subconsciously and consciously. And, with that in mind, here are 6 unusual ways in which color can affect us.

1. It can make us more confident and sexually attractive

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Rocking a colorful outfit

    Little black dress? Red lipstick? It’s no wonder these two are the staples of beauty and fashion. Black and red have been voted the most confidence-inspiring colors, according to this survey. Both men and women would prefer wearing black to important dates or interviews. According to them, black is the biggest confidence booster.

    However, when it came specifically to first dates, women said they’d rather wear something red as it inspires passion and makes them feel sexy. When it came to men, whether it was a date or anything else, their color preference seemed to be blue, or black. And these were the two colors women liked most on men.

    2. It can determine our buying habits

    Supermarkets’ use of color has been mentioned in the introduction, and now you will see exactly how color affects our buying habits. First of all, the majority of your buys are based on the visual appearance of the product in question. You wouldn’t choose a damaged package over a brand new one, would you?

    Therefore, the physical appearance plays a big role in the retail industry. Moreover, most of the products are red because red “screams”. A product with a red label or packaging will grab your attention faster than any other product because it invites you to look at it.

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    This color works best on impulsive shoppers. Green, on the other hand, is the opposite. It is used in shops in order to relax the buyers. Green is often related to nature and the environment, hence the relaxing effect. Because of this relation to nature, many environmental organisations have a green logo, like Greenpeace, or the Animal Planet Channel.

    3. It can make us make healthier food choices

      As with everything in life, we choose food based on its look. If something is more colorful and bright, it will stand out in our field of view, and we will put all our attention on it. When it comes to food, colorful means healthy. Just think of fruits and vegetables. Each color has its own benefit. For example, orange foods (oranges, carrots, pumpkin) are rich with antioxidants. White foods (garlic, mushrooms, potatoes) are extremely good for your health because they have anti-inflammatory properties.

      Therefore, making your plate a rainbow of food colors is essential for your health. Try to include a fruit or a vegetable at least once per day. And more importantly, if you are a parent, include them in your child’s diet as soon as possible.

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      4. It can make us eat less

      How? Well, where do you usually eat? Probably your kitchen. What if I told you that the color of the kitchen walls, and plates, can affect your food intake. People who eat from red plates, eat less food. Additionally, white plates seem bigger than they actually are; therefore, no matter how much food you put on a white plate, it will seem like it’s never enough. So, white plates make you eat more. If you want to eat less, try blue plates, as blue can suppress your appetite.

      5. It can make us seem more aggressive and intimidating

      Certain shades can have a bad influence on our mood and state of mind. The colors that dominate here are dark ones. Black, navy blue, shades of grey – all of them look authoritative and intimidating. They create the illusion of seriousness and power. That’s why CEOs and other powerful people like wearing dark toned suits.

      Red, however, provokes aggressiveness. Something in our perception of red makes us go wild. Even though it can be a passionate color, it can also be aggressive and over-confident. For example, people who have red cars love to show off and think they have all the power in the world. Also, they attract a lot of attention, which only adds to this feeling.

      Just think of race cars or those classic supercars like Ferrari. They look best in red. When you see one, don’t you just want to jump in and immediately go 0 to 100? It makes your blood boil, doesn’t it? Making red cars was a great strategic move by Ferrari.

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      6. It can help soothe our minds and stay calm

      Meditation

        The opposite of aggression is calmness and peacefulness. Unlike the colors in the previous section, there are some that have a soothing effect on us. For example, the color blue. It represents the sky and sea, the elements that make us calm. Most bedrooms are painted blue for that exact reason.

        Moreover, a lot of office spaces are also blue because it’s believed that it awakens productivity. Another color with these properties is green. It symbolizes serenity and makes us feel close to nature. Additionally, yellow is thought to be an optimistic color. It can make us happy and stimulate our minds.

        These are just some of the biggest ways in which color affects our lives without us even realizing it. It’s quite interesting when you think about it, as a lot of animals don’t see the world of color that we have in our heads.

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        Ivan Dimitrijevic

        Ivan is the CEO and founder of a digital marketing company. He has years of experiences in team management, entrepreneurship and productivity.

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        Published on September 23, 2020

        6 Effective Negotiation Skills to Master

        6 Effective Negotiation Skills to Master

        I don’t know about you, but many times when I hear the word negotiate I think of lawyers working out a business deal or having to do battle with a car salesman to try to get a lower price. Since I am in recruiting, the term “negotiation” comes up when someone is attempting to get a higher compensation package.

        If we think about it, we tend to negotiate almost every day in a wide variety of things we do. Getting a handle on the important negotiation skills can be incredibly beneficial in many parts of our lives. Let’s take a look at 6 effective negotiation skills to master.

        What is Negotiation?

        First, let’s take a look at what negotiation is. Put simply, negotiation is a method by which people settle their differences. It is a process in which compromise or agreement can be reached without argument or dispute.

        Anytime two people or sides disagree on something, they are almost always looking for the best possible outcome for their side. This could be from an individual’s perspective or someone representing an organization.

        In reality, it’s rare that one side gets everything they want and the other side gets nothing that they are seeking. Seeking to reach a common ground of sorts where both sides feel like they are getting most of what they want is the key to being successful and maintaining the relationship.

        Places We Negotiate

        I’ve mentioned that we negotiate in just about all phases of our life. For those of you who are shaking your head no, I invite you to think about the following:

        1. Work/Business

        This one is the most obvious and it’s what naturally comes to mind when we think of the word “negotiate”.

        When you first started at your current job, you might have asked for a higher salary. It could be that you delivered a huge new client to your company and used this as leverage in your most recent evaluation for more compensation. If you work with vendors (and just about every company does), maybe you worked them to a lower price or better contract terms.

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        In recruiting, I negotiate with candidates and hiring managers all the time to land the best talent I can find. It’s very common to accept additional work with the (sometimes spoken, sometimes unspoken) agreement that it will benefit your career in the future.

        Recently, I took over a project that was my boss was working on so that I would be able to attend a conference later in the year. And so it goes, we do this all day long at work.

        2. Personal

        I don’t know about you, but I negotiate with my spouse all the time. I’ll cook dinner with the understanding that she does the dishes. Who wants to mow the lawn and who wants to vacuum and dust the house?

        I think we should save 10% for retirement, but she thinks 5% is plenty. Therefore, we save 8%. And don’t even get me started with my kids. My older daughter can borrow my car as soon as she finishes her chores. My younger daughter can go hang out with her friends when her homework is done.

        Then, there are all those interactions in our personal lives outside our homes. The carpenter wants to charge me $12,000 to build a new deck. I think $10,000 is plenty so we agree on $11,000. I ask my neighbor if I can borrow his snowblower in the winter if I invite him over the next time I grill steak. And so on.

        3. Ourselves

        You didn’t expect this one, did you? We negotiate with ourselves all day long.

        I’ll make sure I don’t skip my workout tomorrow since I’m going to have that extra piece of pizza. My spouse has been quiet the last few days, is it worth me asking her about, or should I leave it alone? I think the car place charged me for some repairs that weren’t needed, should I say something or just let it go? I know my friend has been having some personal challenges, should I check in with him? We’ve been friends for a long time, I’m sure he’d come to me if he needed help. I’ve got the #4 pick in this year’s Fantasy Football draft, should I choose a running back or a wide receiver?

        Think about that non-stop voice inside your head. It always seems to be chattering away about something and many times, it’s us negotiating with ourselves. I’ll finish up that report that the boss needs before I turn on the football game.

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        Why Negotiation Skills Are So Important

        Put simply, negotiation skills are important because we all interact with other people, and not only other people but other organizations and groups of people as well.

        We all rarely want the same thing or outcome. Most of the time a vendor is looking at getting you to pay a higher price for something than you want to spend. Therefore, it’s important to negotiate to some middle ground that works well for both sides.

        My wife and I disagree on how much to save for retirement. If we weren’t married it wouldn’t be an issue. We’d each contribute how much we wanted to on our retirement funds. We choose to be married, so we have to come to some agreement that we both feel comfortable with. We have to compromise. Therefore, we have to negotiate.

        If we each lived on a planet by ourselves, we would be free to do just about anything we wanted to. We wouldn’t have to compromise with anyone because we wouldn’t interact with anyone. We would make every choice unilaterally the way we wanted to.

        As we all know, this isn’t how things are. We are constantly interacting with other people and organizations, each one with their own agenda’s, viewpoints, and opinions. Therefore, we have to be able to work together.

        6 Negotiation Skills to Master

        Having strong negotiation skills helps us create win-win situations with others, allowing us to get most of what we want in conjunction with others around us.

        Now, let’s look at 6 effective negotiation skills to master.

        1. Preparation

        Preparation is a key place to start with when getting ready to negotiate. Being prepared means having a clear vision of what you want and how you’d go about achieving it. It means knowing what the end goal looks like and also what you are willing to give to get it.

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        It also means knowing who you are negotiating with and what areas they might be willing to compromise on. You should also know what your “bottom line” is. By “bottom line” I mean what is the most you are willing to give up to get what you want.

        For instance, several years ago, I decided it was time to get a newer car. I say newer because I wanted a “new to me” car, not a brand new car. I did my research and figured out what type of car I wanted. I decided on what must-have items on the car I wanted, the highest amount of miles that would already be on it, the colors I was willing to get it in, and the highest amount of money I was willing to pay.

        After visiting numerous car dealerships I was able to negotiate buying a car. I knew what I was willing to give up (amount of money) and what I was willing to accept, things like the color, amount of miles, etc. I came prepared. This is critical.

        2. Clear Communication

        The next key skill you need to be an effective negotiator is clear communication. You have to be able to clearly articulate what you want to the other party. This means both clear verbal and written communication.

        If you can’t clearly tell the other person what you want, how do you expect to get it? Have you ever worked through something with a vendor or someone else only to learn of a surprise right at the end that wasn’t talked about before? This is not what you would call clear communication. It’s essential to be able to share a coherent and logical vision with the person you are working with.

        3. Active Listening

        Let’s do a quick review of active listening. This is when you are completely focused on the speaker, understand their message, comprehend the information, and respond appropriately. This is a necessary ingredient to be able to negotiate successfully. You must be able to fully focus on the other person’s wants to completely understand them.

        If you aren’t giving them your full attention, you may miss some major points or details. This leads to frustration down the road on both sides. Ensure you are employing your active listening skills when in arbitration mode.

        4. Teamwork and Collaboration

        To be able to get to a place of common ground and a win-win scenario, you have to have a sense of teamwork and collaboration.

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        If you are only thinking about yourself and what you want without giving much care to what the other person is wanting, you are bound to wind up without a solution. The other person may get frustrated and give up if they see you are unwilling to meet them halfway or care little for what they want.

        When you collaborate, you are working together to help each other get what is most important to you. The other upside to negotiating with a sense of teamwork and collaboration is that it helps create a sense of trust, which, in turn, helps provide positive energy for working to a successful conclusion.

        5. Problem Solving

        Problem-solving is another key negotiation skill. When you are working with the other person to get the deal done many times you’ll face new challenges along the way.

        Maybe you want a new vendor to provide training on the software they are selling you but they say it’s going to cost an additional $20,000 to provide this service. If you don’t have the additional $20,000 in the budget to spend on the software but you feel the training is critical, how are you going to solve that problem?

        From what I’ve seen, most vendors aren’t willing to provide additional services without getting paid for them. This is where problem-solving skills will help continue the discussions. You might suggest to the vendor that your company will also be looking to replace their financial software next year, and you’d be happy to ensure they get one of the first seats at the table when the time comes if they could perhaps lower the pricing on their training.

        There’s a solution to most challenges, but it takes problem-solving skills to work through them effectively.

        6. Decision-Making Ability

        Finally, having strong decision-making ability will help you seal the deal when you get to a place where everyone feels like they are getting what works for them. Each step of the way you can cross off the list when you get what you are looking for and decide to move onto the next item. Then, once you have all of your must-have boxes checked and the other side feels good about things, it’s time to shake hands and sign on the dotted line. Powerful decision-making ability will help you get to the finish line together.

        Conclusion

        There you have it, 6 effective negotiation skills to master to lead a more fulfilling life. Once we realize that we negotiate in one form or another almost every day in every phase of our lives, we realize how critical a skill it is.

        Possessing strong negotiation skills will help you in nearly every one of your relationships at both the workplace and in your personal life. If you feel your arbitration tools could use some sharpening, try some of the 6 effective negotiation skills to master that we’ve talked about.

        More Tips to Improve Your Negotiation Skills

        Featured photo credit: Windows via unsplash.com

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